The SEC should not limit the right of investors to sponsor shareholder resolutions: Guest Post from Timothy Smith, Walden Asset Management

The U.S. Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) has just announced its plans to present a revised Rule that will limit the ability of investors to file shareholder resolutions for votes at company stockholder meetings. This comes amidst a concerted effort by certain business groups to sharply limit shareholders’ ability to exercise these rights as owners of…

U.S. SEC to consider new guidance on investor use of proxy advisors – Reuters

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on Tuesday said it would hold a meeting next week on whether to publish new guidance regarding the responsibilities of investors when relying on so-called proxy advisors.The proposal comes amid a push by the corporate lobby to rein in proxy advisors, which recommend how investors should vote in…

Second Supplement to our SEC Comment on Proxy Advisory Firms

Second supplement to our previous comment: We endorse the comment of Ken Bertsch of the Council of Institutional Investors fully and incorporate it by reference into our own. We note that there has yet to be a single specific example of a proxy vote that was incorrectly or harmfully cast as a result of inappropriate,…

Activist Starboard ends BMS proxy war after advisories back Celgene deal | FiercePharma

A classic example of blame the messenger — and another conclusive rebuttal to the claim that proxy advisors are not inclined to support management. Apparently, positive word from influential proxy advisory firms was enough to put the nail in the coffin on Starboard Value’s campaign to scuttle the mammoth Bristol-Myers Squibb-Celgene merger.Friday, the rebel investor said it would stop…

Lorraine Kelly: The Truth About Proxy Advisors

From ISS’s Lorraine Kelly: By any measure, the investment system that helps American workers grow their savings is strong, with $28 trillion in retirement assets now invested in public companies. But if you listen to what some are telling policymakers and others within the Beltway, you may be misled into believing that Main Street investors…

On Governance: What Does the Near Future Hold for Proxy Advisors?

The Conference Board’s list of predictions about the outcome of the SEC’s proxy roundtable hearing looks more like a wish list than anything grounded in probability, with the exception of the comments by the Conference Board’s own Doug Chia: Governance Center Executive Director, Doug Chia observed coming out of the SEC roundtable, “What seemed to…

SEC Should Leave Proxy Advisory Firms Alone – Bloomberg

The biggest problem with the idea that the proxy advisers need to be reined turns on the fallacy that they are all powerful, something critics repeat a lot. They are not. Just one example, according to a stat in the Wall Street Journal, is that last year proxy advisory firms urged shareholders to vote against approving…